America has been a little behind (and some would say far too kind!) when it comes to explaining exactly what cigarettes really do to the body. While written warnings have been around for a long time (in fact, the U.S. was the first country to do so) dozens of other countries quickly took up graphic visuals on cigarette packs. The U.S. is now taking up this option – and then some.
This week, nine pictures of the damage that smoking does were showcased by the government - most are quite graphic and others show the dangers of passive smoking to children (a child watching a large puff of smoke headed toward him, another shows a newborn in the ICU because his mother smoked). They also include a man with a tracheotomy still smoking, seen by the smoke pouring from the hole in his throat. The message: smoking is so addictive that people will smoke even though their bodies have been wracked by the damage it has caused. A message like this wants people to stop before they even start. Others don’t hold back on the physical damage – lungs clogged and black and a cancer ridden mouth, complete with rotted out teeth. The images certainly pack a punch.
But how big will that punch be? The government wants it to be a big one, so nearly half the pack will be filled with both visual and written warnings, with the rest of the pack for the manufacturer’s name and content. The tobacco companies objected to this vehemently, stating it was wrong for the government to overtake the cigarette packages like this and that it was unfair to customers who make a conscious choice to purchase a legal product. But the government won out, due to new regulations to regulate tobacco. Tobacco products still remain legal.
If you’d like to quit smoking, join EmpowHER’s smoking cessation support group here: https://www.empowher.com/groups/Journey-Cessation-Quitting-Smoking
Have you seen these graphic pictures? Would graphic depictions of cancer and disease on your cigarette pack make you rethink your smoking?
Edited by Alison Stanton